The England international still not getting the recognition he deserves.
The 2013 PFA awards marked a significant moment in one footballer’s career as over a decade of hard work and effort paid off for Manchester United’s Michael Carrick.
Carrick was named in the PFA Team of the Year and was also on the shortlist of six candidates for Player of the Year – although was eventually beaten by worthy winner Gareth Bale.
It was a special moment for Carrick, as years of criticism of the England international had finally been proven to be unfounded, or at least to an extent.
It would be difficult to claim that the 31-year-old is without faults, but the midfielder has certainly come in for some strong negativity down the years.
Being named as United Player of the Year ahead of new 26-goal signing Robin Van Persie was also a telling sign.
Carrick was a West Ham United youth player that went onto star for the Hammers before making the switch to London rivals Tottenham Hotspur in 2004.
Never one to hog the limelight the Englishman’s talent is in his ability to break up play and distribute the ball with a range of passes unrivaled by even the best in the Premier League.
When United signed Carrick in 2006 for a fee rising to £18.6m the club were forced to defend the decision to the fans, as it seemed ridiculous to spending that sort of money on a player like the Spurs man.
The midfielder has since played 319 matches for the English champions, featuring 28 times or more every season in the league and playing 61 Champions League ties.
Carrick has five Premier League titles and one Champions League medal on his trophy shelf and if the player had featured in Spain or Germany, would have been recognised as one of the best for several years.
Sir Alex Ferguson saw the talent, now perhaps England manager Roy Hodgson should realise that the midfield general should be the first name on the team sheet – not drafted in as a last minute replacement.